The Charlotte News

Tuesday, June 15, 1954


Site Ed. Note: The front page reports that in Geneva, British Foreign Secretary Anthony Eden and Russia Foreign Minister V. M. Molotov had met in a hurriedly arranged private session this date as the Geneva conference appeared to be moving rapidly toward a breakdown, with the 16 nations which had fought in Korea on the U.N. side having drafted a declaration saying that further talks on Korean unification and free elections were useless at the present time, planning to present the statement at a session of the 19-nation Korean portion of the conference during the afternoon. The U.N. allies wanted to refer the issue on Korea back to the U.N., and had agreed at the morning session unanimously that the afternoon session would be the last on the Korean issues. Authoritative sources indicated that the Korean allies agreed unanimously during the morning that the afternoon session would be the last. The Indo-China portion of the conference was in recess until the next day, when it would take up the Western demands that the Vietminh forces get out of Laos and Cambodia, two of the three Associated States, along with Viet Nam, with Mr. Eden having made clear at a secret session the previous day that the reaction to those demands would determine whether the Indo-China portion would continue. Informed sources said that the Foreign Secretary believed that if no progress were made the following day on the matter, there should be a prolonged recess while the military commission, comprised of French, Vietnamese and Vietminh representatives, finished its work on drawing cease-fire lines. The Communists previously had refused to treat Laos and Cambodia separately from Viet Nam, contending that the fighting in all three states stemmed from nationalist movements, while France and its allies believed that the Vietminh forces from Viet Nam had invaded the two neighboring kingdoms.

Also in Geneva, Communist China told the U.S. this date that it would consider the "early release" of U.S. military and civilian prisoners who had records of good behavior. An estimated 83 U.S. civilians and military personnel were either in prison or had been unable to obtain visas to leave the Chinese mainland.

The White House announced that Prime Minister Churchill would meet with the President in Washington in ten days, and Secretary of State Dulles said this date at a news conference that he hoped the informal talks would lead to closer understanding on collective defense of Southeast Asia. The Secretary would take part in the conferences, along with Foreign Secretary Eden, and Secretary Dulles said that alternatives to the European Defense Community unified army would be explored, along with Southeast Asia. He said no firm decisions would be made at the conference.

In the 34th day of the hearings before the Senate Investigations subcommittee regarding the dispute between the Army and Senator McCarthy, the Senator demanded this date that the American people be given all of the facts about the conduct of the Korean War, about loyalty boards accused of "clearing Communists" for continued duty in the Army, and about that which the Senator termed a "traitorous order" issued by the Truman Administration regarding Formosa. He made a speech on those topics for ten minutes during one of the questioning periods in the hearings. Army special counsel Joseph Welch had questioned him on whether members of the Army loyalty boards should be called before the subcommittee and asked to explain why they had made their decisions, and the Senator had responded that members of the board had returned Communists to the secret radar research facilities at Fort Monmouth in New Jersey and had returned subversives to Fort Meade in Maryland, despite rulings against them by the lower loyalty boards, stating that they had been returned to positions from which they "could keep a razor blade poised over the jugular vein of the nation." The Senator quoted Maj. General Franke Lowe as having said that thousands of lives could have been saved in Korea had General MacArthur been permitted to win the war and not been hamstrung by the State Department under Secretary Acheson. He denounced an order issued by President Truman at the outset of the Korean War in mid-1950, which had directed the Seventh Fleet to protect Formosa from Communist attack and also to prevent any attack by the Nationalist Chinese on the mainland.

Also resuming his testimony this date, subcommittee staff director Francis Carr testified that he believed Secretary of the Army Robert Stevens and Army general counsel John G. Adams had used "quite improper" tactics in their efforts to block Senator McCarthy's investigation of Communists within the Army. In response to questions posed by Army special co-counsel James St. Clair, Mr. Carr had stated that Mr. Adams had sought to block the hearings on the alleged Communist infiltration at Fort Monmouth even before the hearings had started.

Late the previous day, the ongoing feud between Senator Stuart Symington and Senator McCarthy had again flared up, with Senator McCarthy accusing Senator Symington of a "smear" against Senator McCarthy's aides, Senator Symington responding that secret information in Senator McCarthy's files had been handled with laxity regarding security regulations.

Again, there is no transcript available online for this date's morning hearing. In the afternoon session, Mr. Carr would continue testifying and Mr. Cohn would resume his testimony. No further transcripts of the remaining two days of the hearings are available online.

In Tokyo, it was reported that the wreckage of a Navy plane had been located on Yaku Island without any sign of life, after crashing the prior Wednesday with 17 men aboard, during a flight to the Philippines, with stormy weather and jungle blocking efforts to access the crash site until this date.

In New York, fire had broken out in a subway train near the 86th Street station of the Lexington Avenue line, apparently developing from a short-circuited electrical connection, and early reports indicated that about 25 persons were injured or made ill by the acrid smoke.

In Cleveland, a pregnant mother clung with bloody hands to the lunging back of her crazed boxer, in an effort to save her children from its teeth, as police arrived to aid her and accidentally shot her in the leg. She had been doing the laundry in her basement the previous day when the 90-pound dog began snapping and snarling at her, prompting her to grab it and tell her sister-in-law to phone the police and put the children in a bedroom, as the dog bit her hands and she struggled with it to try to maintain control. When police arrived, she was on the back of the dog as it ran around the basement. The police officers managed to wound the dog, but it then ran upstairs to the children's bedroom, and the children were able to get it out, at which point a patrolman shot and killed it as it leaped for his throat in the bathroom. The mother believed that the dog had been simply upset by the heat, but police intended to conduct tests to see whether it had been infected with rabies.

In San Francisco, a television program showing a young girl and her father with their blood vessels hooked together during a heart operation would be presented on nationwide television during the AMA convention the following week. Surgery had been conducted to correct a defect in the girl's heart and the only way to get the best results was with a "dry field", that is with no blood in the heart, and so the surgeons had connected the girl's veins and arteries to the circulatory system of her father. If you are interested in watching, it will air on NBC television on Thursday, June 24 at 10:00 p.m.

In Nuremberg, Germany, a 44-year old man had walked into town this date, trying to shake a jinx which kept him from employment for his short stature of four feet, five inches, making him too big for the circus and too short for day labor. He said that he was rugged and had proved it by walking more than 600 miles from his home in Hamburg during the previous 33 days to look for a job.

A 25-year old Bolivian millionaire, grandson of a deceased tin magnate, had flown to Geneva this date looking for his New York socialite bride who had fled their Italian honeymoon 49 days after their marriage. She had vanished from a Rome clinic on June 10 and had been variously reported in Paris or London, that she had telephoned her husband from Paris to inform him that she did not wish to return to him. He said he hoped for the best. Her stepmother reported from Miami Beach that she was well and safe, having been in touch with her father, not disclosing where she was.

In Burbank, actress Susan Hayward was scheduled to discuss financial figures in divorce court this date, after cross-examination by the attorney for her estranged husband, actor Jess Barker, had adduced testimony from a maid living next door to the couple's home in Sherman Oaks, telling of an instance in which she had been awakened by screams of a nude redhead, presumably Ms. Hayward, screaming: "Don't kill me! Help! Help! Don't kill me!" A man, appearing to be Mr. Barker, pursued her, shouting, "You're going to sign that deal." Ms. Hayward had testified to arguments regarding her husband's late sleeping habits and lack of work, stating that he sometimes slept until early afternoon and that when she had suggested that he go out and look for work, he had stated that he was an actor. She said that his principal duties around the house were buying groceries, turning the water on the fruit trees, buying the newspapers and occasionally helping her with lines from her movie scripts. She said they had many arguments over his grocery shopping, that he would often run around and come home with bargains on food she would not eat, that she had always been taught that pennies saved on food did not pay, as it was gambling with nutritional value and that there was no need to budget in that manner. Ms. Hayward was contending that a prenuptial agreement, which had basically said that each spouse's earnings would remain their separate property, prevented her two million dollar movie contract and $240,000 in assets from becoming community property. Mr. Barker wanted to reconcile their marriage.

As pictured, in London, Queen Elizabeth bestowed the Order of the Garter on Prime Minister Churchill, the oldest order of chivalry in Britain and, as an honor, only below House of Lords peerage, which, if conferred, would deprive him of his place in the House of Commons and thus as Prime Minister. Honi soit qui mal y pense...

On the editorial page, "Where Shall the Line Be Drawn?" lists the five conditions which Secretary of State Dulles had indicated the previous week would have to be met before the U.S. would intervene in Indo-China: an invitation for intervention from the present lawful authority, the French and Vietnamese; clear assurance of complete independence from France for the three Associated States, Laos, Cambodia and Viet Nam; evidence of concern by the U.N.; initiation of a collective effort of some of the other nations of the area; and assurance that France would not withdraw from the battle until it was won. The next day, the Government of Premier Joseph Laniel in France had received a no-confidence vote from the National Assembly, and he had resigned. That event had, for all intents and purposes, relegated Secretary Dulles's five conditions to the wastebasket, as it was unclear whether the successor government would make every effort to bring the war to an end on honorable terms.

The failure of the Geneva conference, the fall of the Laniel Government and the growing Communist threat to Hanoi and the strategic Red River Delta, plus the political impossibilities of bringing to fruition the conditions listed by Secretary Dulles, had made further debate regarding U.S. armed intervention purely academic at present. Yet, there needed to be a line drawn somewhere beyond which Communist penetration would justify the free world in taking a calculated risk of starting a third world war.

Admiral Robert Carney, chief of Naval Operations, in an interview with U.S. News & World Report earlier in the week, had stated that every gain of the Soviets had not only been an addition to their potential, but a double addition, because something came out of free world territory in the process, and that eventually such acquisitions would produce such an imbalance of power that the consequent inferior position of the U.S. would threaten its existence, or at least its existence as a major influence in the world.

It indicates that if the U.S. were unable or unwilling to draw such a line with the support of the other free nations, then it might become imperative to subject the nation's total foreign policy to reappraisal, regarding the possibility of coexistence with the Soviet Union and its satellites in a steadily shrinking free world, not a pleasant prospect, but one which had no other alternative absent an unpredictable internal collapse within the Soviet empire.

"The Other Side of the Polio Story" indicates that in 1952, 41 states had a higher incidence of polio than North Carolina, the incidence of which was one-third the national rate, with Mecklenburg County's rate being one-third of that of the state. In 1953, polio had reached serious proportions in only five North Carolina counties, and over the previous five years, including the epidemic year of 1948, 26 states had a higher incidence than North Carolina.

In 1953, though only five counties had been affected, the wire services regularly listed state totals, resulting in many tourists shunning North Carolina for vacations, despite parts of South Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, Kentucky, Virginia and West Virginia being closer to impacted areas than eastern North Carolina. It concludes that a listing of current cases would be more accurate and fairer than a cumulative total, resulting in exaggerated reports.

"An Appropriate Gateway to Charlotte" tells of columnist Robert C. Ruark, who had grown up in Wilmington, N.C., having come to Charlotte a couple of years earlier and stood outside the untidy airport terminal building, labeling it a "pigsty". As had been the recently burned down Armory-Auditorium for 25 years during its existence, the airport terminal, while perhaps not as bad as described by Mr. Ruark, had been an inadequate, hastily constructed design for another purpose than that for which it was being used.

But now, the new terminal building, which had just opened for business, ranked with the best in the South and properly typified the growing community. It tips its hat to the Chamber of Commerce and the City Council for having developed the project, and to City Manager Henry Yancey for saving the money here and there to assure its ultimate completion.

"A Way To Reduce Racial Tensions" tells of the Trumbull Park Homes of Chicago, formerly an all-white housing project, having, since the previous August, been beset by racial strife, with some $200,000 worth of property damage since one black family had moved in, though blacks had moved into similar projects in the area without any problem.

It suggests that the reasons for the different reactions needed to be understood, as comparable situations might arise in North Carolina in the wake of the May 17 decision in Brown v. Board of Education, mandating, pending the implementing decision of the following term of court, desegregation of public schools for compliance with the Fourteenth Amendment Equal Protection Clause. Chicago residents had found that initiation of information and education campaigns had been useful in lessening racial tensions before desegregation took place. The campaign, they had found, should be handled through a representative group, including church leaders, schools, local government, and veterans and civic organizations. That groundwork had not occurred in the housing project where trouble had arisen, with the single black family having moved in unannounced.

Rock Hill, S.C., had already established a commission on human relations, and, it urges, Charlotte should do likewise, as it was now considering. Problems could result from school desegregation which could produce ugly tensions, perhaps violence. But, it suggests, a full advance discussion of programs and plans could minimize the friction and decrease the likelihood of property damage and the necessity of police action in response.

A piece from the Asheville Citizen, titled "Try It!" indicates that three Cincinnati physicians had told the American Psychiatric Association recently that a pill or shot which was a "mood-lifter" would be good for mild depression. It does not doubt that the therapeutic effect was scientific, but, nevertheless, expressly insists on having a few jokes with it, suggesting that it be fed to Premier Georgi Malenkov, to Senator McCarthy and a "baby dose" to Roy Cohn, some for the "doom and gloom boys", and some for the Baltimore Orioles, to get them out of the American League cellar, as well as a pill dispenser for the City Council chambers and around the mezzanine of the County Courthouse.

"Of course, thee and we do not need medication, although we are not altogether certain about thee."

Trouble being, however, that Senator McCarthy and his paranoiac type, we fear, had already partaken of various "mood-lifters", at least of a liquid variety, without dead reckoning of the resultant down side, then requiring more anti-depressants to conquer the valleys, until there was nothing left but a flat plane, along which they daily skidded until oblivion forced final recognition of the wall which they were about to hit, incapable then of arresting the slide.

As to the remedy for the Orioles, rather than magical formulas and quick-fixes, all they really probably needed was a twi-night double-header victory over the Redlegs to improve their collective dispositions. But, unfortunately, that was not very likely from the AL cellar, as the Redlegs were in a different league, the twain thus to meet only by dint of the World Series, improbable, on both counts, by this point in 1954. Psychiatry strikes out again...

Drew Pearson indicates that it had been no accident that Senator McCarthy had begun his testimony in front of a map, with a carefully prepared lecture on the growth of Communism around the world, as he and Investigations subcommittee special counsel Ray Jenkins had carefully planned that program in advance, with Mr. Jenkins having carefully prompted the Senator to step up to the map and provide his lecture. Mr. Pearson suggests several questions which the members of the subcommittee ought to ask Senator McCarthy, why he had accepted the support of the Communist Party when he ran for the Senate in Wisconsin, that when the fact was called to his attention, why he had made a public statement welcoming it, why he had voted to cut the Marshall Plan, which had helped halt the Communist advance in Europe, why he had voted with former Congressman Vito Marcantonio of New York, the only pro-Communist at the time in Congress, against Point Four technical aid to underdeveloped countries, aid which was raising the standard of living in an effort to resist Communist takeovers, why he had voted to strip the funding of Voice of America, on which Russia had spent vast amounts of money to build jamming stations to drown it out, why the Daily Worker had campaigned against foreign military aid and Senator McCarthy had voted along the same lines, including the cut of arms for Korea—and so on down the list of several other such items, concluding with the question: "Aren't you afraid, Senator McCarthy, that you are on the way to fulfilling Lenin's hopes?"

Marquis Childs indicates that behind a curtain of secrecy, a prolonged dispute had been ongoing among the top policymakers of the Administration regarding intervention in Indo-China. The opposition to direct action by U.S. forces had been led by Army chief of staff, General Matthew Ridgway, taking a position contrary to that of the Joint Chiefs chairman, Admiral Arthur Radford. It had been learned from a source close to the National Security Council that General Ridgway had been recently provided an opportunity to present his own views directly to the President and the Council, where he had made such a compelling case against intervention that the President and Secretary of State Dulles finally concluded that a cautious approach had to be taken regarding intervention.

Some close to the dispute believed that the repudiation of Admiral Radford's interventionist policy had so weakened his authority that a pretext might be found for his resignation as chairman, but that the General Ridgway believed the issue was still subject to reconsideration, with the likelihood that the U.S. would be inevitably drawn into the Indo-China war, which he considered to be nearly disastrous. The General, in explaining his position to the NSC, had used a large wall map to explain the logistical problems of transportation and supply, should the U.S. intervene, beginning with a refutation of the position taken by Admiral Radford and others that sea and air power would be sufficient to enable the French and Vietnamese forces to stop the Vietminh. He had explained that the logistical problems would be five or six times greater than in Korea, where there had been ample port facilities with the U.S. Navy patrolling three sides of the peninsula and airbases had only been 150 miles away in Japan, whereas in Indo-China, the nearest base of operations would be in the Philippines, more than a thousand miles away, with Japan being the closest supply source, 2,000 miles away. It would thus, argued the General, be extremely difficult to maintain air cover, impressing the other NSC members and the President that it would be difficult, therefore, to involve U.S. armed strength in the jungle war.

The Communist Chinese could send both supplies and troops along their well-developed supply routes into Indo-China, leading to the necessity of U.S. atomic attacks on China and thus, believed General Ridgway, turning it into a full-scale Asian war.

Admiral Radford and his supporters for intervention believed that Russia would not join Communist China in such a war, and General Ridgway generally agreed that they might not, at least in the initial stages, but that after the U.S. had committed to provide seven or eight divisions of ground troops, the Soviets would seize a moment when U.S. strength was badly out of balance to enter the conflict and perhaps, at the same time, extend the war to Western Europe. With U.S. forces already limited by a program to cut back to peacetime levels, General Ridgway had argued that available strength would be thrown dangerously out of balance. And, in his most recent press conference, the President had said that he had no plans to seek from Congress an increase to the military budget.

Robert C. Ruark indicates that his mail had been more corrosive than usual, failing to disturb him, as most of it was "unsigned or illiterate or a shotgun wedding of both." It had resulted from his recent swipe at Senator McCarthy, having referred to him as "a blabbermouth" who had thrived on all the unwonted attention he had received. He indicates that so many people had opened a frontal attack on the Senator that he had previously refrained from discussing the subject, "deeming it a waste of time and of the ammunition" he normally used on mice. But even faint criticism generated great response from the Senator's supporters. In the main, they had attacked him as being anti-Catholic, anti-Semitic, anti-American, anti-Irish, pro-Communist, as well as other things, leading him to believe that the general effect which the Senator had on the nation had been "something less than benevolent in the love-thy-neighbor department", having set neighbor upon neighbor regarding merely differences of opinion.

He says that as an Irish volunteer veteran who had many friends of all colors and faiths, a Republican of long-standing, and denominated as a Fascist by the Daily Worker, he was not bothered by the attacks. Before World War II, anyone whom a person did not like was deemed a Fascist and anyone who had bested one in a horse trade was un-American, whereas at present, one was a pink or a Red or some other tag "when any ignorant lunk—or, surprisingly, a non-ignorant lunk—disagrees" on any subject "from Marilyn Monroe to mother love".

Now there was the group "For America", founded by the same individuals who had been isolationist prior to World War II, former Senator Burton Wheeler, Col. Robert McCormick and former Congressman Hamilton Fish, plus some others whom he did not know. He wonders whether the name of their group implied that those who stood apart from them were against America. He indicates that, personally, he would not join a "celestial fish fry" to which belonged the aforementioned group of individuals, but that would not prevent him from being for America.

He indicates that he was likely to be hung in any event, because he was up against Communism, Senator McCarthy and Messrs. Wheeler, McCormick and Fish. He did not like Whittaker Chambers any better than Alger Hiss, was a Republican and loved his country.

Your obvious conflict and cause for consternation is that you have chosen to be a Republican. Become a Democrat and ease your internal conflict. It may mean forgoing any more African-bully safaris, but, in time and with reflection, you won't miss them.

A letter writer, having read several recent letters for and against segregation of the races, says that he saw no comparison between the pairs, Booker T. Washington and George Washington Carver of Tuskegee Institute, and NAACP chief counsel Thurgood Marshall and former UNC President and former Senator Frank Porter Graham. The former two had succeeded in teaching blacks how to earn a living, good citizenship and respect and cooperation with the white race for the good of the "southland", whereas Messrs. Marshall and Graham had succeeded in "upsetting and undoing" nearly all the Tuskegee Institute had accomplished during its existence. He expresses approval for the black man who had said in a letter that he did not want to send his children to a mixed school, also praises the white grandmother for expressing the same sentiment, while finding the man who had the "gall" to criticize her "in such a despicable way should have what is coming to him", that a person who showed such disrespect to an old grandmother was headed toward a bad end. He wants to know if the black people who had worked in white homes and done things for white families had not done so for wages, also wants to know whether a letter writer, who had said she was proud to admit that blacks had once been slaves, was also proud of the Northern merchant ships which had brought her ancestors from Africa and removed them from the "reach of cannibalism", as well as whether she recalled that after the emancipation of blacks from slavery, leaving them to root hog or die, whites had fed, clothed and housed them, whether the best friends blacks ever had were the whites, the latter having provided the education for blacks for nearly 70 years. He says that whites wanted to love and respect blacks, to live alongside them in the future as they had in the past, did not want them to listen to Communistic stories of individuals or any other organizations because they would destroy the harmonious feeling and goodwill which had existed between the races for many years. He urges "sensible and respectable" blacks to voice their opinion.

So, we take from it that the only "sensible and respectable" blacks are those who favor continued segregation of the society and the schools. You're an idiot.

Special note to the not so progressive, condescending Associated Press in 2021: Were his letter transliterated into capitalized terms you made popular and "standardized" as Boogaloo Boys' English in 2020, with his "Negro", "colored" and "white" translated either to "Black" and "white" or "Black" and "White" or, in the reactive, radioactive Deep Confed'racy, as "black" and "White", would his meaning be the least improved or only the more confused and less true to his original meaning, appearing the more separatist, nationalistic, Mr. Garvey's back-to-Africa—from which no one in 2021 in the U.S. actually derived, save the actual current immigrants from that continent, not all black in any event, any more than anyone not a first-generation, direct immigrant actually derived from Europe or Asia or the other four continents, not forgetting the Penguins—, and supremacist in its ultimate outcome than even he, perhaps, intended, in addition to confusing the whole "mixing" issue with, perchance, in terms of 1954, the Hugo Blacks and Walter Whites?

That's right, you're racist idiots, too. Your "new" atavism is not worth a continental. To whom, exactly, are you referring when you use "Black", those black as night or Black as Knights, or someone else?

Why don't you sit down and read this book sometime, as we did in between high school and college, in Atlanta one summer's fortnight, while daily running the track at a strange, yet oddly familiar, high school near Georgia Tech, and understand it, cover-to-cover, as a progression in one man's life and point of view, educated by times and times, and not stuck in a time-stop somewhere in Dodge City.

A letter writer comments on an editorial, "Politics and the Judiciary", regarding Governor William B. Umstead's appointment of Carlisle Higgins, a Winston-Salem attorney who had managed the Governor's gubernatorial campaign in 1952, to the State Supreme Court to replace Justice Sam Ervin, who had been appointed by the Governor to the Senate seat vacated by the death in mid-May of Senator Clyde Hoey, the editorial having expressed that it hoped in the future the Governor would appoint qualified, experienced jurists rather than making political appointments, though recognizing that political appointments to the high courts had been frequent in the past, both at the state and national levels. The writer lists several former political appointments to the State Supreme Court, some of whom had been defeated for confirmation by the voters, while others had remained on the court many years. He says that some of the appointments had occurred before the birth of the editors and so he is taking the liberty to call them to their attention.

It might be noted that until 1996, all North Carolina judicial elections or confirmations had some political aspect, in addition to gubernatorial appointments to fill empty seats, as they were partisan elections. The Democratic majority of the General Assembly changed the system to eliminate partisan labels in 1996, but then the Republican majority restored partisan labels in 2016 and 2017.

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